Post # 1
Got some disappointing news to say the least today. The beautiful church that we have been planning our wedding at for the past year just told us today that they will be restoring the steeple, beginning the weekend before our wedding, which is in 18 days. This means that our plans to take photos in front of the church, etc, will all have to be scrapped. It’s in NYC, which isn’t exactly plentiful with free, close to the venues, beautiful locations big enough to hold our wedding party.
We are pretty darn bummed! I gotta say, this was not my wedding vision. Does anyone have any ideas or similar success stories?
PS… not that it matters, exactly… because it’s way too late to do anything about it… our ceremony venue rental and minister fee will be about $2500. Not crazy money, but we definitely wouldn’t have paid that much if we knew the exterior would be covered in scaffolding!!!
Post # 2
Can you ask them for some of that money back? Renovations are planned for many months in advance, how did they neglect to let you know until now?
Post # 3
Although, if you are allowed to climb on the scaffolding that could make for some pretty awesome and unique photos!
Post # 4
What a bummer! I am so sorry. Think happened at a local and very popular church and I attended two weddings during the time the scaffolding was up. It was such a bummer!
I would definitely look into possibly getting a small refund if possible, doesn’t hurt to ask. Is there any location nearby that would work for pictures?
Post # 5
Yikes, $2500 is a lot of money for a ceremony location IMO and you should definitely ask for some of it back.
Post # 6
Kwhoa: Restorations are planned long in advance, with bids from contractors, several meetings, probably months of planning. Someone needs to explain why you weren’t told of this much, much sooner.
Post # 7
I agree with PP’s that this isn’t good enough. The venue I got married at was a historical house and it is in my contract that from time to time external repairs/restoration may be required – normally these are carried out during July when the venue closees for weddings but some may be emergencies done out of this time resulting in some scaffolding. All fair as they gave me prior notice. Did they give you no notice in your contract that this could occur? If not then I’d be asking for some money back.
Post # 8
Thanks for the feedback! Yes, Fiance is calling tomorrow to inquire about the possibility, if any, about a partial refund. It just seems so dumb that they are choosing now to do the restoration, at the beginning of wedding season! We realized now that the main sanctuary is closed for services during the summer because of lack of air conditioner, and only used for events, so I guess it’s a better time for them… There’s nothing in our contract about restoration or renovation, and of course, it’s the one thing I forgot to ask…
The only thing I’m telling myself is that it will be so much more authentically urban. I’m trying to keep myself in check, but groomzilla might lose it with this church (which we love!). Even my mom, so cute, said “I want to stab that steeple.”
Post # 9
Astra: Not entirely true. If new restoration repairs appear and they are of public safety concerns, you know like a steeple falling down, then they are required to fix them as soon as possible. This could result in little time to notify anyone.
Kwhoa: I very much doubt you would be entitled to any refunds. And it would be pretty insutling to the church to ask since you will basically be saying we chose your church not for the spiritual significance but for the pretty photos. A church isn’t a prop for wedding photos, it is a religious building where people confirm their committment to marriage in front of God.
Post # 10
j_jaye: I definitely see your point. That’s why we will definitely be very careful when we ask tomorrow about the scaffolding in detail, and a partial refund. They have the “upper hand”, as it were, since we are definitely still getting married there and love the church (we are members). However, $1800 of our fee is venue rental, and you do not need to be a member to rent (and there is no discount for being a member), so we will see if they can at least give us a break on renting the outdoor garden, which may be unusable. I completely agree, though, about the “look” not being the reason we chose the church, to be wed. We chose the church based on our relationship and the minister, which has nothing to do with the aesthetics.
When people talk about $200 suggested donation for ceremony though, I can’t help but be jealous!
Post # 11
j_jaye: I think its pretty silly to think that the church would be insulted to know that you chose that church because of its beauty. If it were JUST about spiritual significance, churches wouldnt be full of carved wood and stained glass and steeples. They’d just be plain buildings that you come to to worship.
Churches in large cities especially know that people come there because of the looks and photo opportunities. In my city there are churches that even offer non-denominational ceremonies because they know that people want to get married there because of the beauty of the building.
OP, I think you have every right to ask for a discounted rate due to the inability to take photos outside because of the renovations. I imagine if you’d known about the renovations ahead of time you’d have found a different venue…so they shouldnt be allowed to have you over a barrel because of their timing